In the wake of the United States’ staggering election of an apparently unqualified, sexist, racist hate-monger, I feel abandoned by my fellow Americans. As a woman, I feel that no matter how hard I try or how qualified I am, I will always have to fight harder for a lesser result.
In addition to feeling absolutely heartbroken, I am also scared. Uncertainty is terrible for economies and societies, and we just served ourselves a heaping portion of it.
Although my initial feelings are fear and despair, I hope they will fade and be replaced by determination, hope, and drive to take action. Because giving in to fear is a terrible response, and falling into anger is even worse. That is how entire societies fall apart. And ours is falling apart. That is how this vicious election happened in the first place.
I offer this prayer for myself and ALL my fellow Americans:
May I choose not to live inside the hate machine.
May I save my energy for worthwhile action instead of escalating pointless arguments.
May I take positive action when you are not looking, and when you are looking too.
May I wish the best for you…. but may I wish the best for the country as a whole more.
May I admit that I am not the arbiter of what “the best” is.
May I let shouting and rhetoric slip past me like fog and focus on what is substantial and real.
May I not participate in violent words, thoughts, beliefs, or actions. May I oppose them whenever I can, to the extent I can.
May I say the truth as I see it.
May I pray, and stay steady, and trust that the clouds will part and we will remember we are all linked together on this adventure.
May I keep loving you and hope you will keep loving me.
May I try to lift you up instead of shoving you down.
May I replace complaints with ideas.
May I replace hate with hope.
May I not give up.
This essay and prayer were originally published in The Coffeelicious on Medium.